Friday, September 9, 2011

Remember I told you I'd have a few oldies sprinkled in here and there for birthday fun?  I figured tonight was a good night for that, since I am - apparently - celebrating my own birth as we speak... a surprise that had to do with the 80's attire I mentioned yesterday.  I'll let you know how it went.

SO.  Here's one of my favorite birthday-related tutorials ever.  It's something we've used for every birthday since it's inception.  Enjoy!

The best thing about this wreathe?  It allowed me to bust some stash!  Woo-hoo!  (You know about stashbusting September, right?  I’ve only mentioned it a couple hundred times.  Anyway, I can’t buy new craft stuff, I have to make do with old... and I’ve been planning on making this for a while.)
Oh, yes, I almost forgot.  The second best thing?  It’s double sided.  What?!? you ask?  Yes, that’s right.  It’s a BOGO.  Or wait.  MOGO.  Yes, that's right.  Make One Get One.  And who doesn’t love that??  

If you’ve got some balloons hanging around waiting for someone’s birthday and a straw wreathe you picked up for A WHOPPING 25 CENTS at the thrift store, you can make this too!  Yea!
Along with: 
straw wreathe
you’ll also need:
floral pins (the double ended kind)
some ribbon
some quick thinking.  (We’ll get to that later)
Ready for fun and easy?  
First, you will need to decide on two different color schemes, one for each side of the wreathe.  The color schemes can contain as many colors each as you want, as long as the two different schemes include at least two of the same color.  Make sense?  I don’t know, I don’t think I even understand that.  Here, let me clarify with an example:
for my wreathe, I was making one side for mini’s birthday and one side for bug’s birthday. 
Side One:  Pink, Yellow, Lime, Turquoise, Blue, White
Side Two: Red, Turquoise, Blue, White
One side obviously for a girl, one for a boy, with three colors in common between the two sides.
(Just a note of interest - I came up with this idea because I’d already decided on a color scheme for mini’s birthday and it involved pink.  I realized it wouldn’t be fair to make a wreathe for mini and not for bug.  But I also couldn’t really parade pink around bug’s car birthday... see the dilemma?)
Lay out your wreathe.
Now, starting with color scheme number one, pick a balloon and stick it on the wreathe using the floral pin.  Easy.  

There really is no rhyme or reason here, at least not with mine.  I just did what looked good.  I tried to make sure that the pattern and the direction the balloons were pointing were both random.  I wanted it to look crazy and fun, not orderly and planned.
So just keep plugging the balloons in.  I also made sure to squish the balloons relatively close together at the base where the pin was pushed in, to make the balloons kind of fluff out and fold a bit, hiding the pin completely.
Be sure to leave the edges of the wreathe relatively balloon-free.
When you reach this point, start to worry about running out of balloons.  If balloons aren’t normally used in crafts, it doesn’t count as buying craft items, does it?
When you get to this point, realize you’ll have enough and breathe a sigh of relief.
When this side is all done, flip it over.
Start pinning in the second color scheme.
And continue.  For what seems like quite a while.  Until you get to this point, when you run out of pins.  Well, that’s ironic.
So... here’s where the quick thinking comes in.  Ask yourself this:  What do you have hanging around the house that looks and acts like these double pronged pins?
*Flash of brilliance*
Grab your trusty staple gun.  Not that crafty little staple gun.  The heavy duty one that lives in the garage.  The one with the staples that are THIS LONG.  (you know, pretty darn long.)
Now, staple the balloons right into the straw wreathe.  
The staple are a little harder to hide than the pins, but once it is done, you shouldn’t be able to tell.
When you have the second side complete, you’ll notice that you can see the all the balloons from the first side sticking out all over.  This totally ruins the color scheme, so now is when you’ll fix that.
Take the balloons that match both sides - for me turquoise, blue and white.  Staple them to the INSIDE of the wreathe, just as you did the front and back.  Alternate colors, make it look random.
When the inside has been ringed with the common colors, do the outside of the wreathe.  Go all the way around, so there’s no straw visible anymore.
You may need to flip the wreathe and do this on the other side too, just to make sure that both sides have only the correct colors showing and everything looks exactly how you want it too.
Now, when you look from either side, all you see around the edges of the wreathe are the balloons with colors that match both sides.  The shared colors mask the balloons that clash with the other color scheme.

Now, take your ribbon and singe the ends to prevent fraying.
Tie the ends in a gorgeous elegant bow.  OR, if you’re like me, an adequate but certainly not great bow.  I need bow lessons.
Now, slip the loop of ribbon under the wreathe, with the bow coming up through the middle.
Take the bow end of the loop and feed it through the loop; pull it up so that the other end of the loop slides down tight against the wreathe.
You will now need to adjust the balloons around the ribbon so that it sits straight and the balloons aren’t smooshed.

Adjust the balloons on the back side too.
And now, just hang it up and allow yourself to feel particularly good about completing one craft for both kids.

Happy birthday all you September Ninethers!

*Be sure to check just below for all the fun parties I link to!


Anonymous said...

Happy birthday! ("Buon compleanno" in my language!)

OneRadMother said...

Haha - I just posted one of these, too :)

sweet southern inspiration said...

What a cute idea! Can't wait to try it.

Whit said...

This is so cute I am so making this for my kids birthdays thank you again so much for linking up to my party Show and Share! hope to see you again this week!

A mommy's life...with a touch of YELLOW

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